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The good and the bad...presented with permission from The Patriot E-Journal

web posted December 20, 2010

"According to Obama, the federal government can make you do something if your failure to do it, combined with similar inaction by others, has a 'substantial effect' on interstate commerce. By rejecting that premise on Monday, U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson took a stand for the principle that Congress may exercise only those powers that are specifically enumerated in the Constitution." --columnist Jacob Sullum

"If the federal government can get away with ordering individuals to buy health insurance based on interstate commerce laws, it could order us to submit to any other practice it deems for our good based on similar misinterpretations of the Constitution. Such a course would further erode our liberties and move us closer to dictatorship and away from principles the Constitution was written to protect." --columnist Cal Thomas

"The Supreme Court, as currently constituted, seems unlikely to overturn Judge Hudson's holding on the individual mandate and the tax penalty. Yes, the highest court has gone very far in extending the Commerce Clause over the past seven decades. But even the Supremes have never gone as far as the Obama Justice Department desperately wants it to go. For the court to go that far, it will have to fundamentally break the Constitution, tearing out its strictures on a limited government. Such a ruling would mean the literal end of any limits on the power of Congress, posing the most dangerous political threat to our liberty since our nation's founding." --Hans von Spakovsky of the Heritage Foundation

"Regarding the estate tax, or what has come to be known as the death tax, it is probably, of all the ways in which our government takes revenue, the most immoral. ... The death tax punishes the very behavior that defines the economic heart and soul of American prosperity. But perhaps worse, it attacks our most important social institution -- the American family. ... If we want to get back to prosperity, then it should be axiomatic that protecting freedom, entrepreneurship and family is the answer. Not the politics of power and envy." --columnist Star Parker

"Most people have no clue what military life is like, least of all the opinion makers in New York, Los Angeles and the nation's capital. The military is not representative of the country at large. It is disproportionately rural, small-town, Southern and Hispanic. We ask our troops to do a lot for very little money. Sometimes they die for us. The least Democrats could do is not pass grandstanding bills while self-righteously denouncing our servicemen as homophobes." --columnist Ann Coulter

"Republicans, they're all for these tax cuts, even for multimillionaires but opposed to extending the unemployment benefits that are helping the people who are hurting the most. ... [T]his is mean spirited. ... [T]his tax cut deal could add another $900 billion to a deficit that is already out of control. So why shouldn't Americans look at this as a disaster in the making?" --NBC's Meredith Vieira

"Republicans would apparently sooner walk over broken glass than yield on tax cuts for the rich. President Obama lacks that degree of ideological fervor, which is why he was elected. He's not a fighter; he's a conciliator. ... In the battle over the Bush-era tax cuts, he folded earlier than he should have, but at the end of the day, he did the right thing in accepting the extension in exchange for a package that puts more money into the economy and helps the middle class. You could say we're all Keynesians now, with Republicans cheering government spending as long as it's in the form of tax cuts." --Newsweek's Eleanor Clift

"As President Obama's tax cut compromise is about to pass the Senate, a federal judge throws a curve ball at his health care reform law, deeming it unconstitutional. ... And the thing that he objects to most strenuously is this idea that everybody has to be insured. And the Republicans are jumping up and down, they're ready to have a party. Do you think they have a legal leg to stand on?" --CBS's Harry Smith (What part of unconstitutional do you not understand?)

"I will be happy to see the Republicans test whether or not I'm itching for a fight on a whole range of issues. I suspect they will find I am. And I think the American people will be on my side on a whole bunch of these fights. ... One of those fights will be over the very thing that some Democrats are angry about: The two-year extension of George W. Bush-era tax cuts for the nation's wealthiest Americans. When they expire in two years, I will fight to end them. ... Republicans are going to have to explain to the American people over the next two years how making those tax cuts for the high end permanent squares with their stated desire to start reducing deficits and debt." --Barack Obama

"It makes no sense to me to provide huge tax breaks for millionaires and billionaires while we drive up the national debt that our children and grandchildren will have to pay." --Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), who helped run up the massive deficits that our grandchildren will have to pay

"No, I won't vote for [the tax compromise]. I don't feel that I should be coerced. I believe and I certainly was honest about this in the campaign I ran, that it would do no economic damage if you had that fairly small increase. Two years from now when this comes up again, we won't be in a recession, clearly. And I will make a prediction to you now. They'll [Republicans] be just as opposed to taxing in a fair way as they were today. That is this argument about a recession is pure cover. That's not their real reason, and when we take this up in two years and we're not in a recession, you're gonna hear the same kind of resistance to putting the rate back to where it was during that very successful economy under Bill Clinton." --Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA)

"Everywhere I go, fortunately, I meet parents who are working very hard to make sure that their kids are healthy. They're doing things like cutting down on desserts and trying to increase fruits and vegetables. They're trying to teach their kids the kind of healthy habits that will stay with them for a lifetime. But when our kids spend so much of their time each day in school, and when many children get up to half their daily calories from school meals, it's clear that we as a nation have a responsibility to meet as well. We can't just leave it up to the parents." --Michelle Obama, who championed the just-signed $4.5 billion child nutrition law

"I still spend about an hour a day trying to study this economy. I want to make full disclosure: You know, I make quite a bit of money now, so the -- the position that the Republicans have urged will personally benefit me. I think the people that benefit most should pay most. I just got back from a trip to Asia with my foundation. Hong Kong, super-free market place, had a stimulus. Well, I guess we're not supposed to use that word anymore." --Bill Clinton

"We're acting as judges. If we're going to decide everything on the basis of history -- by the way, what is the scope of the right to keep and bear arms? Machine guns? Torpedoes? Handguns? Are you a sportsman? Do you like to shoot pistols at targets? Well, get on the subway and go to Maryland. There is no problem, I don't think, for anyone who really wants to have a gun." --Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer still arguing the Heller v. D.C. decision in which he supported banning gun ownership to most residents of the nation's capital city

"What can you do with a good ol' boy like Bubba? He only does what Bubba does. You probably shouldn't blame a distracted and overwhelmed Barack Obama, either. But that was a remarkable show the two presidents put on at the White House the other day. ... Will the president take Bubba along the next time he and Michelle flee the White House for a brief exile in friendlier places?" --Washington Times editor emeritus Wesley Pruden on the Obama/Clinton joint press conference

"It's the Clinton tax rates that will be reinstated if all of this falls, so who's the party of no here, and who's the party of exactly right?" --radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh

"The Supreme Court heard arguments Thursday on Arizona's new immigration law, which punishes employers who hire illegal aliens. Nobody's rioting. Polls show that most whites and Hispanics hate each other in Arizona, but because they're in Arizona, it's a dry hate." --comedian Argus Hamilton

"[I]t's high time the 26th amendment was repealed. If 70 is the new 60, and 60 is the new 50, it's fair to say that 18 is the new eight. Giving the vote to a bunch of brats who are still collecting an allowance, thus allowing them to cancel out the votes of their elders is inane. The sad irony is that the only youngsters who deserve to vote are members of the military, and they're the ones whose ballots are least likely to be counted." --columnist Burt Prelutsky

web posted December 13, 2010

"Well, l-l-l-l-let -- let me -- let me use, uh, a couple of analogies. Um... I -- I've said before that I felt that the middle-class tax cuts were being held hostage to the high end tax cuts. Uh, I think it's tempting not to negotiate with hostage takers -- uh, unless the hostage gets harmed. Then, uh, people will question the wisdom of that strategy. In this case, the hostage was the American people -- and I was not willing to see them get harmed. ... This isn't an abstract debate. This is real money for real people. This package will help strengthen the recovery. That I'm confident about." --Barack Obama on the deal to extend the Bush tax rates, but referring to the GOP as "hostage takers"

"[L]et me say that on the Republican side, this is their holy grail, these tax cuts for the wealthy. This is -- seems to be their central economic doctrine." --Barack Obama, who continues to call preventing tax hikes "tax cuts"

"I will tell you this. If they think it's okay to raise taxes for the embattled middle class because they're gonna pout if we don't give more money to millionaires, it really is time for the people of America to take up pitchforks." --Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO)

"I'm going to be judged by my life, my activities my contributions to society. And I just apologize for the awkward position that some of you that are in. But at the end of the day, as I started off saying, compared to where I've been, I haven't had a bad day since. Thank you." --Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) in a speech after being censured

"[T]he [Obama deficit] commission's report ... is well worth a look. In addition to suggesting some much-needed reforms, including changes to the budget process and simplification of the tax code, it clearly shows, despite its talk of 'painful' choices, that eliminating the federal deficit and reining in the national debt does not require radical change. Which is too bad, because even if Congress implemented every cut suggested by the report, the federal government would still be far too big, rife with programs that are unnecessary, unconstitutional or both." --columnist Jacob Sullum

"More troubling than WikiLeaks' latest revelation of US secrets ... is the Obama administration's weak, wrong-headed and erratic response. Unfortunately, the administration has acted consistently with its demonstrated unwillingness to assert and defend US interests across a wide range of threats, such as Iran and North Korea, which, ironically, the leaked cables amply document. ... His secretary of state does not comprehend that America is the subject of the attack, his department of defense is not interested in defending us, and the president himself seems utterly indifferent to the whole affair. All of this underscores the real problem. It is not WikiLeaks that ultimately imperils our national security, but the failing Obama administration, which ignores the nature and extent of threats we face, and which is too often unwilling to act to thwart them." --former UN ambassador John Bolton

"A month after [Barack Obama's] inauguration, the North Koreans tested a ballistic missile. Since then, they've revealed yet another nuclear program and attacked South Korea just weeks after Obama's embarrassing failure to win a trade deal from Seoul during an official visit. Meanwhile, according to WikiLeaks and other sources, the North Koreans have been selling ballistic missiles to the Iranians. And what are Obama's global priorities? The START treaty, Israeli settlements, and climate change." --columnist Jonah Goldberg

"Which do you think is less expensive, not to mention preferable: a cure for cancer, Alzheimer's disease and diabetes, or caring for people with these diseases? Wouldn't it be better medical and public policy to direct more resources toward finding a cure for diseases that cost a lot to treat than to rely on a government insurance program, such as Obamacare, which seeks mainly to help pay the bills for people after they become ill?" --columnist Cal Thomas

"In terms of lost revenue for the government next year, it's $450 billion, nearly half a trillion dollars. To compare this, in comparison, the stimulus that President Obama put in, enacted back in early 2009, that cost on an annual basis, approximately half a trillion dollars. So the deficit in the short term is going up. Whether it's on Social Security or all sorts of things, none of that has been dealt with with this plan."--NBC's Chuck Todd on the tax deal between Obama and congressional Republicans

"Our job is to publish and be damned ... and that's what we have done. ... Our job is to shed light on this, our job is to give greater transparency, to put it in context.... Our job is not to protect the U.S.... I mean, the First Amendment protects us in terms of releasing this information which does enlighten people about the way the U.S. conducts foreign policy." --TIME Magazine editor Richard Stengel on the publishing of Wikileaks

"No one wants the country to suffer another catastrophe. But when a struggling Bill Clinton was faced with the Oklahoma City bombing and a floundering George W. Bush was confronted by 9/11, they found their voices and a route to political revival." --TIME columnist Mark Halperin

"This president has a historic mandate. Just as Abraham Lincoln had to lead the nation from slavery and Franklin Roosevelt from the Depression, this president must lead the nation from the calamitous failures of three decades of conservative dominance. ... This daunting project is not a matter of ambition or appetite -- or even unconscious Kenyan [sic] socialism." --Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of The Nation, with a possible Freudian slip

"Uncertainty [on taxes] is frequently blamed for the sorry state of the economy -- for why businesses are not investing strongly in new equipment or hiring more workers, and for why consumers are not spending freely. On Wall Street, it's even said that government meddling is the main culprit and that political gridlock is the cure. This is a serious misreading of the situation. Uncertainty is likely holding back the recovery. But its sources are far more fundamental than the tax and environmental issues that typically top the list of complaints. And the solution is certainly not for the government to do less. Rather, it needs to do much more." --Christina Romer, former chairwoman of Barack Obama's Council of Economic Advisers

"There is an actual campaign constantly, since I've been at the White House. Every president has known the truth about the Arab world, but they have not been able to act for the truth. And the whole question of money involved in politics -- we are owned by propagandists against the Arabs. There's no question about that. Congress, the White House and Hollywood, Wall Street are owned by the Zionists. No question, in my opinion. They put their money where their mouth is." --former White House bureau chief Helen Thomas picking up where she left off

"We would have an energy climate change bill in the United States if President Obama had made that his top priority and brought that to the American people and Congress first rather than the health care bill. But he didn't, and I think it was a big mistake. The climate bill is much more important than health care because the climate situation is about life and death whereas the health care bill was much more limited." --Ted Turner

"Homeland security starts with hometown security, and each of us plays a critical role in keeping our country and communities safe. I applaud Walmart for joining the 'If You See Something, Say Something' campaign. This partnership will help millions of shoppers across the nation identify and report indicators of terrorism, crime and other threats to law enforcement authorities." --Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano rolling out participation of Walmart stores in urging citizens to be vigilant for signs of terrorist activities ... in Walmart

"The problem with liberals is that they never learn from their mistakes. What's worse is that they never stop making mistakes. Instead of changing their awful ways, the only lesson they derive from their endless failures is to double their efforts. Thus, when they find themselves in a hole, instead of climbing out, they merely dig faster. When you consider their recent setbacks, you'd think liberals would finally conclude they don't know squat about decision-making. For instance, Obama makes a highly publicized trip to Asia and comes back with nothing to show for it except an aversion to shrimp and another 20,000 frequent flier miles." --columnist Burt Prelutsky

"The motive behind the proposed repeal of the military's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy is ... what, exactly? ... The whole idea of opening military enlistment to professed gays is the furtherance of the gay rights cause. It is what you might call an odd motive indeed for adoption of a military policy with mainly cultural implications. ...The drive to repeal 'don't ask, don't tell' is about political promises to the gay rights movement and the urgency, as liberals see it, of keeping their base happy and voting liberal. Just what the country needs right now -- political and cultural warfare over who fights our wars and on what terms." --columnist William Murchison

"President Obama enlisted Colin Powell to persuade the Senate to pass a treaty with Russia limiting nuclear weapons. They're obsolete. Who needs nuclear weapons when we can destroy any country in the world just by defaulting on our Treasury bonds?" --comedian Argus Hamilton

"Because of a printing error, a billion new $100 bills have to be destroyed. They're going to burn $100 billion dollars -- just like they did with the last stimulus program." --comedian Jay Leno

"This is not as significant a boost to the economy as the Recovery Act was, but we're in a different situation now. I mean, when the Recovery Act passed, we were looking at a potential Great Depression and we might have seen unemployment go up to 15 percent, 20 percent -- we don't know." --Barack Obama, who promised that unemployment wouldn't exceed 8 percent if the "stimulus" were enacted

web posted December 6, 2010

"The latest WikiLeak may ultimately amount to no more than a colossal headache for U.S. diplomats. By contrast, the previous leak exposed U.S. sources and methods on the battlefield. ... Still, every fiasco must have its silver lining, and this one is no exception. For starters, it has belatedly prompted at least some liberals to grow up on the topic of government secrecy and its connection to national security, international stability and, not least, human rights." --columnist Bret Stephens

"We Americans have given federal, state and local governments the right to interfere with any aspect of our lives when it comes to issues of health. So should we be surprised when an emboldened Congress enacts Obamacare, even though most American were against it, that not only mandates that we purchase health insurance but will eventually control virtually every aspect of our health care? Should we be surprised when government tells us what food to give our children ... taxes soft drinks in the name of fighting obesity ... orders restaurants not to serve foie gras or cook with trans fats? If you think government has the right to look after our health, how far would you have it go?" --economist Walter E. Williams

"Republicans have allowed the Left to categorize the argument as 'extending the Bush Era Tax Cuts.' That's flat wrong. What President Obama and most of the remaining Democrats in Congress want to do is to RAISE TAXES. If all of the Bush Era Tax Cuts are extended, no one, not one single person of the more than 310 million in the United States will have their taxes cut. Their tax rates will remain the same. If, on the other hand, Nancy Pelosi and her Liberal colleagues in the House want to change those rates, they will not be reversing a tax cut. They will be RAISING TAXES." --political analyst Rich Galen

"What the midterm elections proved is that the American people do not trust Barack Obama to lead them. And trust, that magic five-letter word, is the most important element in the relationship between a nation and its government. ... The scars from the financial crisis are still raw and unhealed; unemployment is a cruel scourge; and there are terrible threats to the country's internal and external security, with the future overshadowed by emerging superpowers and competitors. And there is no one to trust. The U.S. has all kinds of problems. But its biggest over the course of the next two years is how to find a leader who will inspire through character and integrity, vision and resolution, courage and judgment the belief, faith and confidence that Americans have always warmly given to the right person -- someone they can trust." --historian Paul Johnson

"We have a political party demanding that we borrow money to pay for tax cuts on household income above a quarter million, while it is at the same time refusing to borrow a lot less money so that middle class Americans who can't find work can keep their homes and just barely keep their heads above water. ... They don't live in this world. They don't live in this country. And I think we'd be better off if they didn't live in this country." --MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, who wants to take from the "rich" simply because they can "afford it"

"Warren Buffett has been practically begging the country, begging Congress to tax him more. In fact, many of the richest Americans like Buffett, Bill and Melinda Gates and Ted Turner say that they should pay higher tax. ... You said that you would be willing to have your taxes higher. Many Americans, particularly those who are successful, say hang on, I did this work. This is a capitalist society. This is my just reward. You disagree with that notion. ... It's emotional for you...." --ABC's Christiane Amanpour setting up the "sympathy" for Leftist gazillionaires adamant that government ought to seize other people's money against their will

"If GM had gone bankrupt and large portions of it had been closed down, we could have lost several hundred thousand jobs. ... The administration's communications effort on this has been absolutely abysmal. It's quite extraordinary to me how they haven't put this forward more forcefully and how the public still doesn't see just how different a kind of bailout this was than the Wall Street bailouts, which remain deservedly unpopular." --Financial Times columnist Ed Luce

"Bush's was an exhausting presidency that will, I suspect, be remembered more for its waste -- of time, lives, money, moral standing and economic strength -- than for anything else. ... Far too much testosterone was spent kicking irrelevant butts and landing, breathless with self-regard, on carrier decks to celebrate victories that were Pyrrhic at best. We struggle to recover from the thoughtless carnage of his tenure." --Time's Joe Klein

"From the earliest days of my administration, we've worked to eliminate wasteful spending and streamline government. I promise to go through the budget line by line to eliminate programs that have outlived their usefulness. And in each of the budgets I've put forward so far we proposed approximately $20 billion in savings through shrinking or ending more than a hundred and twenty of such programs." --Barack Obama

"There's nothing about -- because it's all rigged. I mean, the whole conversation is rigged. The fact that we don't get to a discussion before the break about what we're going to do in the lame duck -- is just rigged. This stuff's rigged." --Colorado Demo Sen. Michael Bennet on the entire Senate process

"I have to confess I think the Senate will be a much poorer place without Russ Feingold in it." --Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who apparently missed the irony of this particular praise on his defeated Senate co-author of campaign finance regulations, which were supposed to "get the money out of politics" -- in other words, make campaigns poorer

"Yeah, they did [touch my body parts] and it was the first time anybody touched them in a long time and frankly, I liked it." --attorney Gloria Allred in an answer to a question by radio talk-show host Sean Hannity

"Basically it's a big mistake to discuss climate policy separately from the major themes of globalization. The climate summit in Cancun at the end of the month is not a climate conference, but one of the largest economic conferences since the Second World War. ... First of all, developed countries have basically expropriated the atmosphere of the world community. But one must say clearly that we redistribute de facto the world's wealth by climate policy. Obviously, the owners of coal and oil will not be enthusiastic about this. One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy anymore, with problems such as deforestation or the ozone hole." --Ottmar Edenhofer, global warmist extraordinaire, deputy director and chief economist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research

"Whether through ignorance or intent, the White House, Harry Pelosi and Nancy Reid ... are again setting their sails against public opinion. Damn the voters, full speed backwards. ... The whole world wants a new economic approach from Washington, but Democratic leaders see the lame-duck session as another chance to impose their wrong-headed will. The voters spoke ... and the Dems respond by becoming the Party of No." --columnist Michael Goodwin

"The White House was evacuated Tuesday when a small plane accidentally wandered over the mansion. It was just a student pilot in a Cessna. The kid was flying directly over the United States so President Obama was never in any danger of being struck by the plane." --comedian Argus Hamilton

"Politicians are torn between two legitimate impulses: to protect us from very real dangers as best they can, and to be liked by us. Unfortunately, these impulses often conflict. If we weren't in danger, we wouldn't need airport screening, electronic or otherwise. The black forest cake deliveryman on his way to grandma's for Oktoberfest in Orlando would have neither his cake nor his Schwarzwälderkirschtortenlieferantenhut searched, never mind the inseam of his lederhosen." --columnist Jonah Goldberg

"WikiLeaks has released thousands of classified documents that could be detrimental to the United States. Usually, when something this embarrassing about the United States is revealed, it's because Joe Biden said it." --comedian Jay Leno



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